Emily started experiencing pains in September 2012. Her mum took her to the GP on a number of occasions and was repeatedly told that she had a trapped nerve; that she was experiencing growing pains; and on one occasion, that she was neurotic. Emily was taking a box of ibuprofen a day at 13 years old as she was screaming in pain. Her mum was told this was OK and would not cause any harm to her liver. Her mum asked for an x-ray and was told there would be a 6 week wait as it wasn’t urgent.
Emily’s mum took her to a private clinic as she didn’t wait to wait.
Two days later, a simple x-ray showed a tumour which turned out to be Ewing Sarcoma. By now, it was too large for surgery and Emily’s chances of survival had decreased from 70% to 30%.
She had 27 lots of chemotherapy, each lasting between 3-5 days. She had 39 sessions of Proton Beam Therapy in America (where she got to ring the bell!) and also had 14 rounds of radiotherapy in the UK. During her first year of treatment, she contracted pneumonia, MRSA, cellulitis and suffered a massive internal bleed. She had her last round of chemo in April 2015 which resulted in her becoming neutropenic and contracting sepsis.
Emily fought hard for 2 years and 4 months and died unexpectedly, aged 16.
Emily loved life, her family and her dogs. Her anthem was Katy Perry’s Firework, and she definitely was one!
Ewing sarcoma is a rare type of cancer that affects bones or the tissue around bones.
It mainly affects children and young people, with most cases diagnosed in people aged 10 to 20. It’s more common in males than females.
Symptoms include bone pain (which may get worse over time and at night), a tender lump or swelling, a high temperature which doesn’t go away, weight loss or lethargy.
It’s difficult to diagnose as it’s very rare and often resembles symptoms for other conditions.